After a deafening silence, it is refreshing to see that the CEOs of several of the nation’s largest banks have stepped forward to voice their support for a resolution to our country’s financial issues. 

They warned of the dire consequences to the economy if this Congress fails to act. The bankers are right: It will hurt this fragile economy. Perhaps they, along with GM, Chrysler and everyone else who received a taxpayer-funded bailout can return the favor and help the country over this financial hump until Congress works things out.

Americans, whether they sign the front or back side of a paycheck, understand the debt ceiling issue. As a nation, we have spent too much and received too little for what was spent and now the basic rules of accounting are upon us. Do we increase the nation’s credit line or find ways to cut our spending? President Obama is correct in saying we need a balanced approach and that we should call our representatives to support this position. Most sane Americans’ idea of a balanced approach is to have our monthly expenditures meet the monthly income received from tax receipts.  

In my job as a mortgage lender, I have the unique opportunity to meet face-to-face with consumers and small business owners. I see their financial documents and must be able to understand all their financial secrets and worries. If I came across a borrower who is deep in debt and whose obligations exceed their income and yet continues to borrow to service those obligations, I would not consider them a good risk. Elected twice to serve on my borough council, I had to help balance a municipal budget each year in a town that did not have one commercial taxable property. This meant any tax increase fell directly on the backs of my neighbors and I had to explain why I voted to increase their taxes while walking my dog, at the borough picnic or at my children’s school program.  

The lesson learned: do not spend what you do not have.  

For those in Congress who still have any doubt about spending, the party is over. It is irresponsible to borrow money or raise taxes to meet our basic obligations. It is a simple concept and I cannot understand why there is so much fighting in Washington. I am tired of hearing elected officials scaring the citizenry with word “default” and telling our senior citizens that their Social Security check may not arrive. The country is not broke. It is overextended.  

As the father of three young children, I am well accustomed to childish behavior and squabbling about almost everything, so I can relate to what is happening in Congress. In my house, problems are resolved in the following manner: Understand the all facts and correct the situation in such a manner that a lesson is learned to prevent the problem from occurring again.

The other major issue facing the U.S. is our long cherished triple-A credit rating, which is in jeopardy of being lowered. It is in jeopardy not so much over the failure to raise the debt ceiling, but by the fact that we racked up so much debt. I admit I do not understand how the rating agencies make a call like that, considering that they missed so many large financial institution failures in the past. I do understand that a national debt of 14 trillion is jeopardizing the future of my children and our country.   

Richard Booth, is a certified mortgage banker with America’s First Funding Group LLC, a residential & commercial lender in Neptune, N.J.

After a deafening silence, it is refreshing to see that the CEOs of several of the nation’s largest banks have stepped forward to voice their support for a resolution to our country’s financial issues. 
They warned of the dire consequences to the economy if this Congress fails to act. The bankers are right: It will hurt this fragile economy. Perhaps they, along with GM, Chrysler and everyone else who received a taxpayer-funded bailout can return the favor and help the country over this financial hump until Congress works things out.
Americans, whether they sign the front or back side of a paycheck, understand the debt ceiling issue. As a nation, we have spent too much and received too little for what was spent and now the basic rules of accounting are upon us. Do we increase the nation’s credit line or find ways to cut our spending?   President Obama is correct in saying we need a balanced approach and that we should call our representatives to support this position. Most sane Americans’ idea of a balanced approach is to have our monthly expenditures meet the monthly income received from tax receipts.  
In my job as a mortgage lender, I have the unique opportunity to meet face-to-face with consumers and small business owners. I see their financial documents and must be able to understand all their financial secrets and worries. If I came across a borrower who is deep in debt and whose obligations exceed their income and yet continues to borrow to service those obligations, I would not consider them a good risk. Elected twice to serve on my borough council, I had to help balance a municipal budget each year in a town that did not have one commercial ratable. This meant any tax increase fell directly on the backs of my neighbors and I had to explain why I voted to increase their taxes while walking my dog, at the borough picnic or at my children’s school program.  
The lesson learned: do not spend what you do not have.  
For those in Congress who still have any doubt over spending, the party is over. As a country it is irresponsible to borrow money or raise taxes to meet our basic obligations. It is a simple concept and I cannot understand why there is so much fighting in Washington. I am tired of hearing elected officials scaring the citizenry with word “default” and telling our senior citizens that their social security check may not arrive. The country is not broke. It is over-extended.  
As the father of three young children, I am well accustomed to childish behavior and squabbling about almost everything, so I can relate to what is happening in Congress. In my house, problems are resolved in the following manner: Understand the all facts and correct the situation in such a manner that a lesson is learned to prevent the problem from occurring again.
The other major issue facing the U.S. is our long cherished triple-A credit rating, which is in jeopardy of being lowered. It is in jeopardy not so much over the failure to raise the debt ceiling, but by the fact that we racked up so much debt. I admit I do not understand how the rating agencies make a call like that, considering that they missed so many large financial institution failures in the past. I do understand that a national debt of 14 trillion is jeopardizing the future of my children and our country.   
Richard Booth, is a certified mortgage banker with America’s First Funding Group LLC, a residential & commercial lender in Neptune, N.J.